Georgia’s Abrams raises $22M in 2 months, far outpacing Kemp

Jul 8, 2022, 9:00 AM | Updated: 2:09 pm

ATLANTA (AP) — Stacey Abrams’ fundraising continues to accelerate, swamping Republican Gov. Brian Kemp and pushing close to $50 million raised in the seven months since the Georgia Democrat announced her campaign in December.

Abrams announced Friday that her direct campaign and its associated One Georgia committee raised $21.8 million during the two months ended June 30 and together had $18.5 million in cash on hand.

That’s far more than the combined $6.8 million Kemp raised for his direct campaign and associated Georgians First committee. Kemp said he had $6.4 million in cash as of June 30.

Abrams also said that One Georgia, a special state fundraising vehicle allowing her to collect unlimited contributions and coordinate spending with her campaign, raised $6.3 million before May.

The leadership committee had not reported numbers at an earlier deadline because of legal disputes. Abrams started collecting contributions for One Georgia before the May 24 primary, in which she was unopposed for the Democratic nomination. However, state ethics officials ruled that she could not use the leadership committee vehicle until she was officially certified as the Democratic nominee after the primary, even though state party officials argued she was already the party standard-bearer as the only Democrat who filed to run.

Abrams spokesperson Jaylen Black said Friday that the campaign understands from state ethics officials that it is free to spend all of the leadership committee money that it raised before she became the official nominee.

Both Kemp and Abrams are spending heavily. Abrams has already spent more than $30 million with the general election campaign just begun. Kemp has already spent more than $17 million as he dismantled former U.S. Sen. David Perdue and others in the Republican primary.

The 2022 races in closely divided Georgia are likely to blow past old records, with a torrent of political spending expected from candidates, political parties and outside groups in the gubernatorial contest and the U.S. Senate race between Democratic incumbent Raphael Warnock and Republican challenger Herschel Walker.

Kemp has raised more than $31 million, topping the $22.4 million he raised in his win over Abrams in 2018. But Abrams has raised $49 million in a much shorter period, with far more cash on hand. It’s a flip from the decades when Georgia Democrats scratched for resources while Republicans generally enjoyed strong fundraising thanks in part to business contributions.

Abrams campaign manager Lauren Groh Wargo said more than 240,000 donors have given $100 or less to Abrams. She argued that Abrams must strongly outspend Kemp to overcome the advantages he gets from being a sitting governor, including the ability to command news coverage and hand out federal COVID-19 relief money.

“While we are gratified by the strong fundraising we have secured to date, we understand that our campaign must continue to dramatically outraise and outspend the incumbent in order to create a level playing field,” Wargo wrote Friday in a publicly distributed memo.

She said Abrams would spend the money “on deep, continuous and thoughtful engagement with the most diverse electorate in the state’s history,” in keeping with Abrams’ voter mobilization approach.

Kemp spokesperson Tate Mitchell said Kemp will run on his record while acknowledging that “Abrams and her liberal allies can — and will — continue to outraise and outspend our campaign.”

“Far-left radicals from across the country are bankrolling Stacey Abrams’ campaign to bring the failed agenda of D.C. Democrats to Georgia,” Mitchell said in a statement.

Georgia candidates have a grace period ending Friday to file after the June 30 deadline. Neither Abrams nor Kemp had filed their actual reports with state ethics officials as of Friday afternoon. Libertarian Shane Hazel hadn’t filed yet and independent Al Bartell said he raised $50 during the period.

Both Perdue and Abrams sued over Georgia’s leadership committee rules, saying it was unfair that Kemp could take in large amounts while Perdue and Abrams were barred unless they won their party primaries.

After an earlier ruling that Kemp could not spend money from the committee for his campaign against Perdue, U.S. District Judge Mark Cohen ruled that Georgians First Leadership Committee could not solicit or receive contributions until after the primary election made Kemp the Republican nominee for governor.


Follow Jeff Amy on Twitter at http://twitter.com/jeffamy.


An earlier version of the story listed incorrect fundraising totals for Libertarian Shane Hazel and independent Al Bartell.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Tracy Toulou...

Associated Press

How to tackle crime in Indian Country? Empower tribal justice, ex-Justice Department official says

A recently retired director of the Justice Dept. says the federal government hasn't given tribal justice systems equal recognition.

3 hours ago

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson...

Associated Press

House Speaker Mike Johnson says he will push for aid to Israel and Ukraine this week

House Speaker Mike Johnson said Sunday he will try to advance wartime aid for Israel this week, along with funding for Ukraine.

4 hours ago

President Joe Biden speaks at a campaign rally Saturday, March 9, 2024, at Pullman Yards in Atlanta...

Associated Press

US shoots down ‘nearly all’ Iran-launched attack drones as Biden vows support for Israel’s defense

Joe Biden cut short a weekend stay at his beach house to meet with his national security team as Iran launched an attack against Israel.

1 day ago

Protesters in Phoenix shout as they join thousands marching around the Arizona state Capitol after ...

Associated Press

Abortion ruling supercharges Arizona to be an especially important swing state

A ruling this week instituting a near-total abortion ban supercharged Arizona's role, turning it into the most critical battleground.

2 days ago

Former President Donald Trump, center, appears in court for his arraignment, Tuesday, April 4, 2023...

Associated Press

Manhattan court searching for jurors to hear first-ever criminal case against a former president

Jury selection is set to start Monday in former President Donald Trump's hush money case — the first trial of the presumptive nominee.

2 days ago

Emergency personnel arrive on the scene after a  an 18-wheeler crashed into the Texas Department of...

Associated Press

1 dead and 13 injured in semitrailer crash at a Texas public safety office, with the driver jailed

A driver rammed an 18-wheeler though the front of a building where his renewal for a commercial driver’s license had been rejected.

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles


Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Valley residents should be mindful of plumbing ahead of holidays

With Halloween in the rear-view and more holidays coming up, Day & Night recommends that Valley residents prepare accordingly.

Georgia’s Abrams raises $22M in 2 months, far outpacing Kemp